Thursday, August 30, 2012

Mothering 4

Honestly, we are only 8 days into this journey, but I feel we are falling into a natural rhythm quickly.  We enjoyed our first weekend as a family of 6 last weekend, taking several outings to parks and enjoying the cooler weather.  Aron took Maggie on a date to Starbucks on Monday, I took the boys to Trader Joe's for groceries on Wednesday, I have done Maggie's school pick-up with all 4, and yesterday, I got out of the car with all 4 and we enjoyed Rite Aid ice-cream!  It was empowering to get out alone with all of my kiddos.  They are so sweet together!

Gavin Scott's arrival

This pregnancy (my 5th, as we lost a baby last summer) was my most challenging by far. I started showing sooner, was more uncomfortable sooner, and had massive amounts of amniotic fluid.  It wasn't concerning to the OB as I have had several babies and they tend to arrive bigger and bigger.  I felt that at week 20, I was easily looking near the end of pregnancy and yet, I had 20 more weeks to go!  Also, added stress in this pregnancy was a cross-country move, a switching of OB's 6 weeks before my due date, and deciding if we would try to have another VBAC or just do an elective C-section based on how big this little boy was on par to be (they were estimating easily over 9, closer to 10 pounds).

God was so gracious in this time of transition as we settled back into life in SoCal and assumed a daily routine once again.  Several long-time close friends have sought me out on a regular basis and I have loved getting to see their faces and do life with them once again (even though they do not live in my neck of the woods).  Aron's parents are also an hour away so it's good to have family close.  My sister and her family are also moving back to the area this week and I'm giddy at the thought of being near her, my best-friend, and her family.  Our kids just love eachother, so it'll be a blast that they can have regular cousin time.

August 25 was Gavin's due date and I was praying that I would have spontaneous labor with him like I did with Curren (the girls were not spontaneous labors).  And God was faithful to give that to me!  On Tuesday, August 21 I laid down for a nap and woke up with mild cramping.  Nothing that would make me alert everyone that I was in labor, but ironically I was and earlier that day, I had posted a status update to Facebook saying: "I keep obsessively checking my FB status to see if I've had a baby. I haven't."  Little did I know, he would arrive early the next morning!  I picked Maggie up from school and by 4pm realized the mild cramping was still there and was perhaps, a bit more intense.  I think this is one of the strangest/most challenging parts of the end of pregnancy: actually declaring "this is it!" Unless your water breaks, it's a wait and see until you have that moment of knowing you are truly in labor.  By 5pm, I called Lindsey, one my best friends and birth-photographer extraordinaire, telling her she might want to start heading down my way and take pics.  Another friend, Jessie, came over to bring dinner and hang out around 7pm and I texted her around 6pm to say that I was quite possibly in labor and I had a call in to my OB.  She came anyway, bringing a delicious Thai dinner and we visited for about an hour until I just said, "I think we need to go to the hospital."  My OB had said earlier to come and just have them check me.  Aron's mom was on her way down to grab our kids and Jessie graciously offered to stay with them until her arrival.

We were scrambling to pack the kids' bags and get our things together for the hospital and I at one point, I said urgently, "Aron, we have to go NOW!"  I was feeling the contractions pretty intensely and they were coming closer and closer together.

I made a couple phone calls on the way and when I called my sister I was crying because I was so excited and also still a bit torn about whether or not to get an epidural.  She encouraged me to do it; I knew deep down I wouldn't be able to do this one naturally (just did not have the emotional stamina this time around), like I had with my other 2 unmedicated VBACs, and felt at peace with that.

We got set up in our L&D room around 8:45pm, the nurse checked me--4cm and 70% effaced.  The anesthesiologist was called in, and the contractions came consistently every 2 minutes for 3 hours.  I felt most of them, although the epidural did take the edge off.  My OB checked me at 11:30 pm and broke my water--6cm dilated, fully effaced!  For the next 2 hours, the contractions came every 45 seconds to 1 minute.  Those were pretty intense hours and the anesthesiologist came back and gave me an extra something to help the pain; after that, I was completely numb.  Sometime after 1:30am my OB checked me again and I was complete and ready to push.  It took about 8 pushes, somewhere between 15-20 minutes, but here he came!  I was in tears as Gavin entered the world, just praising God aloud that He gave me another VBAC and brought our son safely into the world.

I had minimal tearing and the healing processes has been so much better and quicker this time around.  Gavin is a terrific nurser and sleeper.  I feel so grateful; it's been a tremendously smooth transition thus far to a family of 6. The kids have welcomed him with open arms (literally) and love to hold him, kiss him, and play with him.

I realized not many hours after Gavin's birth that he arrived almost to the day that we lost our baby last summer. I see redemption in what was lost, a story that God is passionate about writing on the hearts of all mankind.

Welcome, Gavin Scott! We love you so much already.

Arrived 8/22/12 at 1:50am, weighing in at 8 pounds, 12 ounces (a whole pound under Kate! I was shocked) and 21 1/2 inches long (our longest and leanest baby yet) with a full head of dark hair

We loved the name Gavin and Scott is Aron's middle name.

Monday, August 20, 2012

How did we get here?!

First day of Kindergarten: 2012-2013

And I'm back to blogging.  Excited to start logging away our family's adventures once again.